- Work on not looking sorry when you’re actually not sorry
- Be mindful of negative facial expressions that don’t accurately reflect your inner state
- With stress, social pressures and nonstop stimulus, cultivating a relaxed and peaceful face is something worth working on
I know I’m going to create some controversy with this one, but I have to say it. So many women make the mistake of excessive expressive talking and it drives me crazy. And it’s one of those things that you can’t really say directly to someone’s face. How do you tell a friend she looks sorry, sad or angry (when she isn’t) and has a ton of unnecessary crease lines on her face?
What do I mean exactly by “excessive expressive talking”? It’s when your face doesn’t match your emotions and ultimately what’s coming out of your mouth – the words or meaning you’re genuinely trying to convey. For example, there are people out there (more women than men), who look like they’re sorry every time they speak. Even when asking for water at a restaurant or asking somebody to move out of the way, they furrow their eye brows, wrinkle their nose, crinkle their eyes to convey this apologetic expression that doesn’t really match the magnitude of their feelings or words.
It’s the worst when you see this at work in a business context. Not only is this not good for your confidence and mental health, it gives you unnecessary wrinkles, so cut it out!
Another classic example is making an all wrinkled up prune-y face when you’re trying to convey empathy or sympathy. You don’t need to do this, just relax your face muscles and be natural, and let your words or a hug convey the message. This can become a habit for a lot of us, and unless you actively practice taking a deep breath and relaxing your face in these situations, it could become something that’s really hard to fix.
I’m obviously not saying that you need to talk like a robot or not express your true genuine emotions. If you actually are having a deep moment of sadness or remorse, of course, let it go. I’m all about living in your present. But have you ever caught yourself in a mirror or looked at a video of yourself talking and wondered why your face looks so sad, angry or sorry? I certainly have and that’s why I’ve taken my time to actively cultivate the habit of a relaxed face. I want to have my face reflect my true inner state that’s hopefully peaceful most of the time.
One caveat to this – the one emotion that’s okay to go buck wild on is happiness. I envy people with natural smiley faces. Even if those wrinkles settle in, they will show positive emotions and add to the character and depth of your beauty. Those articles about certain celebrities never smiling or laughing to avoid wrinkles is ridiculous and not something I would recommend.
To summarize, my tip to cut out excessive expressive talking is not to encourage you to mask your emotions and live like a robot. It’s actually the opposite. I want to encourage you to be mindful of facial expressions that don’t accurately reflect your inner state and unnecessarily convey negative emotions. With all the stress, social pressures and stimulus around us, cultivating a relaxed and peaceful face is something that’s worth working on these days.